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October 8, 2008

ATTORNEY GENERAL MADIGAN KEEPS LAKE COUNTY SEX OFFENDER OFF STREETS AND IN TREATMENT

Chicago — Attorney General Lisa Madigan today said her office has successfully prosecuted a case to keep a sex offender in custody as a sexually violent person.

Lake County Circuit Court Judge Theodore Potkonjak ruled yesterday that Roberto Campos, 67, will remain in the custody of the Illinois Department of Human Services (IDHS) for treatment instead of being released. Madigan's office handles state prosecutions of cases to keep sexually violent persons in custody.

Campos waived his right to a jury trial that was scheduled to begin Monday, October 6, choosing a bench trial instead. Dr. Paul Heaton and Dr. Marc Levinson provided expert testimony on behalf of Madigan's office during the two day trial.

"Campos has a long history of dangerous sex crimes committed against children. It is clear that he needs treatment in a secure setting and should not be released into a community," Madigan said.

According to Madigan, Campos' criminal history includes a 1985 conviction in Lake County for aggravated criminal sexual abuse and aggravated criminal sexual assault for crimes committed against an 11- year-old child. For those crimes, he was sentenced to 30 years in the Illinois Department of Corrections (IDOC). Campos also was convicted by a Lake County jury in 1976 for deviate sexual assault and indecent liberties with a child for crimes committed against a 13-year-old. He was sentenced to serve from four to 12 years in the IDOC for these crimes.

In November 2001, when Campos was scheduled for release from the IDOC, the Attorney General's office filed a petition for commitment. He has been detained at the IDHS Rushville Treatment and Detention Facility and yesterday was ordered by Judge Potkonjak to be returned there to the custody of IDHS. The court set the case for a dispositional hearing on November 20, 2008.

Attorney General Madigan noted the valuable contribution of Dr. Levinson to this case. Levinson has been involved with Sexually Violent Persons Commitment Act evaluations since the inception of the Act in 1998. Because of illness, Dr. Levinson must retire from future evaluation work but testified for several hours Tuesday in this case.

To be committed under the Sexually Violent Persons Commitment Act, a person must have been convicted of a sexually violent offense and exhibit a mental disorder. Additionally, prosecutors must prove that the offender is likely to commit future acts of sexual violence if released from custody. Once committed to IDHS, offenders are reevaluated on a regular basis to determine if they continue to meet the criteria for commitment as a sexually violent person.

Since enactment of the Act, 223 convicted sex offenders have been committed as sexually violent persons. Madigan's office currently has an additional 148 petitions filed with the courts seeking commitment of offenders who otherwise would be released from prisoon.

Assistant Attorneys General Michael Kress and Renee Snow handled the case for Madigan's Sexually Violent Persons Bureau.

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